Tuesday, December 06, 2011
Newt the Nasty, the way the Beltway crowd sees him. Scarcely human, eh?
DUMBERER AND DUMBEREST. I'm starting to smell a rat. Everybody on the inside is working overtime, even double-overtime, to tell us how awful and unspeakable Newt Gingrich would be as the Republican nominee. George Will, Charles Krauthammer, Mark Steyn, the National Review Gang, Ann Coulter, Laura Ingraham, Senator Tom Coburn, and even Don Imus AND his Cain-loving toady Bernie McJerk. I get it. Gingrich has enemies. He isn't a nice guy. He's stepped on a lot of tender Beltway toes. He's cut some corners in the past. You might not want to invite him to your wife's birthday party.
But is anybody else seeing the irony? It is Republican insiders (excepting Imus, who's just senile) who are leading the charge against him, and their preferred argument is that he's a Washington insider who shouldn't be acceptable to the Tea Party folks. Huh? Since when have George Will and Charles Krauthammer approved anyone favored by the Tea Party crowd? Aren't they the ones who keep telling us that the presidency isn't a job for well-intentioned amateurs? They certainly disposed of Herman Cain in a hurry and with prejudice.
My wife suggests that all these Gingrich opponents must know something and we should consider ourselves warned. Maybe she's right. She frequently is.
Still. My suspicion cilia are on alert, standing up and waving their tiny hands. Things I'm getting tired of hearing: "Yeah, he's the smartest guy in the room, but he never knows when to shut up." "He's never had an unspoken thought." "He's not really a limited government conservative; he's a big government conservative if he's a conservative at all." "He's a detestable human being."
Interesting, too, that the Democrats are exhibiting schizophrenic behavior. Barney Frank claims Gingrich is his dream Republican candidate. Pelosi is threatening him with Ethics Committee blackmail. If Frank wants Gingrich as a candidate, why advertise that preference to Republican primary voters? If Pelosi thinks she can do him in later, why try to scare him out of the race now? Hmmmm.
Let's all take a breath here. I'm not even going to libel Romney, other than to point out that he took offense at an interview by Bret Baier of Fox News, who merely asked questions Romney will be asked a thousand times before the nomination and/or the election will be decided.
But I will ask some questions. Is Romney the smartest guy in the room? Not when Gingrich is in the room. And which do you prefer? Romney who can't answer a straight question about RomneyCare, or Gingrich, who's "never had an unspoken thought." and "never knows when to shut up"? Is Romney, former governor of Taxachusetts, a true believer in limited government, more credible as a conservative because his political career consists of a single term as governor and many more years of running for office? And is Romney, for sure, NOT a detestable human being, unlike almost all other politicians, because his personality consists of good hair, tallness, and a car dealer's smile?
I'm just posing questions here. Because I have a very clear vision of what the 2012 presidential campaign will be like. It will be ugliness incarnate. Obama cannot run on his record. He will run instead the dirtiest campaign since Harry Truman's whitewashed 1948 bid, which was as nasty as it gets until Obama 2012 gets underway.
Who will you want then? When the negative ads powered by a billion media dollars start rolling out across the electoral landscape. Will you want a thin-skinned office-seeker whose chief claim to fame is a profitable Olympics and a budget-busting healthcare mandate? Or will you want Mike Tyson in a fat, old-guy suit drawing on a lifetime of harsh ring tactics to go toe-to-toe with an opponent everyone but Alan Colmes concedes is not in his brainpower league?
Sure, Gingrich will get bloodied in the ad wars. Who thinks Romney wouldn't? He's already wearing RomneyCare like an ox-yoke, and he's too prideful to pull his head out of the harness. And who doesn't think the man who can't shut up will not counterattack with pitiless documentation of the multifarious and disgraceful scandals of the Obama administration? A right cross and deadly uppercut (or three) for each wild left look. Here''s a new mantra for you in considering how the 2012 election will go: WHAT WOULD ROMNEY DO? I'm thinking he'll open his eyes in shock and awe like the Runaway Bride. Gingrich? Laura Ingraham dismissed him on Imus this morning as a tubby cross between a Cabbage Patch doll and Chuckie the horror movie nemesis. When I think of Obama's Mussolini pose I kind of like the Chuckie imagery. (Funny how fat was okay when conservatives were clamoring for Christie...)
Who out there thinks presidents have to be nice guys? We've had a few but hardly the majority. Ever notice that all Bill Clinton's friends eventually got thrown under the bus? That LBJ so bullied and intimidated those around him that even his doting biographer Doris Kearns Goodwin recounts that he held staff meetings -- a la Louis XIV -- on his regal toilet?
And when is it exactly that we started insisting on nice guys to look out for our interests against the thieves and crooks who populate Washington, DC? Wasn't there a time when we needed Andrew Jackson to batter his opponents into submission? Or George Bush with his bullhorn on the rubble at Ground Zero? Or... oh forget it.
uh, the Octagon. Looks mean in there, don't it? Obama! Obama! Wanna see it.
Forget everything I've said. Think of this instead. Why do all the insiders suddenly want Romney, who acts more like Mr. Greenjeans or the star of a Nickelodeon series about the Royal Canadian Mounted Police than a president of the United States? Why?
And can you think of any possible reason why the two or three smartest conservatives in the conservative movement keep bashing a man they just as repeatedly describe as "the smartest man in the room"?
Me? I can't think of any. Although it is interesting how many of them are writing columns criticizing Obama for "class warfare" campaign rhetoric they contemn as causing "envy."
Forget I said that too. None of them have any desire to be the smartest man in the room. Or woman. You know what I mean.